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8 Things to Do When Visiting Friends at Their Colleges

Last weekend, I had a blast visiting three of my friends (all Her Campus writers!) at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. We all know each other in different ways— one went to middle and high school with me, one I met on a service trip to the Dominican Republic, and another I met on a journalism trip to Oxford. I connected them all once I heard they were going to the same school last spring, and now a year later, they’re all close friends! I feel like a true matchmaker! Anyway, I’m sure many of you have plans to visit high school friends at their respective colleges, so I thought I’d give a few suggestions of fun activities to try when you do.

1. Stay up late talking reminiscing on petty high school drama

One of my favorite parts of the weekend was when my friend and I literally stayed awake until around two a.m. rehashing hilarious moments from middle and high school. I felt bad for her roommate — she probably thought our school was psycho — but I had a fun time remembering the good ole days, something I can’t really do with any of my college friends.

2. Grab a bite to eat at a yummy brunch place

We went to this adorable café called Krankies not once but twice, since it was so good! After late nights, it’s always fun to get a late-morning brunch, and Krankies had absolutely scrumptious biscuits that I already miss. I liked getting to see a place where my friends often go, so now I can maybe imagine what they’re doing on a late Saturday morning.

3. Along with that, people-watch at a coffee shop

We did this at a joint called Camino Bakery, which has huge and delicious cookies, so I highly recommend it. Nothing helps you understand a city more than people-watching, and doing so in a college town is especially fun because you see excited students, nervous students, old students, young students, and sometimes even a professor or two! Not only can you enjoy a nice cup of coffee, but you can get a real taste — no pun intended! — of the city where your friends live.

4. Scope out the cute independent bookstores

This may just be something I like to do, but definitely find the best indie bookshop near your friend’s school! They often have good sections of books about the area or professor books. Even if you don’t want to buy one, just skimming the description or reading a few pages can give you some more insight into the city. The shop’s selection itself also shows you what’s popular there, which can differ from state to state and even college to college. Plus, who doesn’t like spending a few free hours in an adorable bookshop?

5. Go for a walk through their campus

Another one of my favorite moments of the weekend was going for a walk with one of my friends all around Wake Forest’s campus. I got to see beautiful running trails, hidden study spots, and elaborate sporting fields. By having your friend guide you, you can see all the underrated parts of campus that you might not notice on a more formal tour. Again, you can also see where your friends spend all their time, and once you’re gone, you can imagine them in those places. And if it’s a nice day like ours was, a walk outside is always refreshing!

6. Hang out with some of their college friends

Take the chance to meet some of your friend’s friends. You’ve probably heard about them, so it’s nice to put a name to a face, and they’re probably excited to meet you, too!

7. Take in the social scene

Whatever the school’s social events are, try them! See how they compare to your own school — it’s surprising how much university social scenes vary. Regardless, you’ll probably enjoy it or at least find it entertaining!

8. Make plans to do it again!

Finally, get ready to do it again! Maybe your friend will come visit you next time, and you can show them your college lifestyle. Or, you can head back to them and try some new things like watching a sporting event or going to the movie theater. Either way, keep your friendships strong — good friends are special!

Image Courtesy of GIPHY

Sophia Scanlan

Northwestern '22

Sophia Scanlan is a freshman from Boston, Mass., majoring in History with a minor in Psychology. In her free time (the little that she has!), Sophia likes to read, bake cookies, find the best sales, exercise, and spend time with friends! She's also quite possibly the biggest Red Sox fan out there....
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